Susan Bergtraum is the immediate past president of the New York State School Boards Association. NYSSBA provides advocacy, training and information to school boards in support of their mission to govern the state’s public schools. The NYSSBA Board establishes policies to supervise, control and direct the business of the Association.
Bergtram served as president, and vice president and Area 11 Director of NYSSBA, representing Nassau County. She has chaired the following committees: the Policy and Bylaws Committee (five times), the Operations Committee (twice), the Awards (formerly Distinguished Service Award) Committee and Task Force on Student Health and Safety. She was a member of the Investment Advisory Committee and Task Force on Cost Containment. She was the board liaison to the Resolutions Committee and the Council of Local School Boards Associations (COLSBA).
Bergtram served on the Commissioner’s Advisory Council of School Board Members and the Chancellor’s Advisory Council. She was a member of the the National School Boards Association’s Nominating Committee in 2016.
Bergtraum has been a member of the Nassau BOCES Board member since 2006. She was elected vice president in 2014 and formerly served as district clerk. She was a member of the East Williston Board from 1991 to 2006, where she served as president and vice president. She is the co-founder and a trustee of the East Williston Education Foundation, as well as a trustee of the Wheatley Scholarship Fund.
Bergtraum is a past president and vice president of the Nassau-Suffolk School Boards Association (N-SSBA) and is on N-SSBA's executive, legislation and finance committees. She sits on the Council for the Prejudice Reductions Conference Planning Committee, an advisory board for the Suffolk Center on the Holocaust, Diversity and Human Understanding, and on the Nassau County Human Rights Commission advisory board for its student conference.
Bergtraum has been a guest lecturer at several local colleges, including Adelphi University, C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University and Queens College. She is the co-author of the book Playing it Safe.
In 2002, Bergtraum was awarded the Detective Joe Zito Memorial Award from the Council for Prejudice Reduction. In 2011, she received the Nassau BOCES Education Partner Award in recognition of her commitment to public education. Other awards include the Friends of Education Award, the Council of Administrators and Supervisors Award, the N-SSBA's Presidential Award and the Long Island Crisis Center’s Person of the Year 2015 award.
Bergtraum received a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in school psychology from Queens College. She taught in New York City and Washington, D.C., and she worked on a special education evaluation team in New York City. She was also the director of training for Playing it Safe.